Sunday, May 21, 2017
Jack London State Historic Park
In 1905 Jack London, novelist, journalist, social activist, and world adventurer, bought a parcel of ranchland in central California with the intent to build his dream house and have a quiet place in the country to write and try his hand at scientific agriculture. The house, known as Wolf House, was completed in 1913 but before Jack and his wife Charmian could move in a fire destroyed it. Jack died in 1916 at the age of 40 of gastrointestinal uremic poisoning and plans to rebuild the house were forgotten. Charmian had a smaller version built for herself where she lived until her death in 1955.
The historic site includes the ruins of Wolf House, a cottage where the Londons lived, farm outbuildings, and Charmian’s house which has museum exhibits about Jack and Charmian.
A paved but steep trail leads to the museum. The first floor is accessed by a lift operated by park personnel. The second floor is not accessible. For an easier trip to the Wolf House ruins take the gravel road from the parking lot instead of the trail from the museum. Wheelchair users may need assistance to get to both the museum and Wolf House. Visitors who can climb into a golf cart may ride to both sites.
The roads at the ranch, where the cottage and other buildings are located, are hilly with large gravel. Wheelchair users will need a strong helper. The cottage has a hard to open gate and a walkway of loose gravel but it does have a ramp.
RVs will fit in the museum lot if parked across several spaces. The ranch parking lot has long spaces. Park 38.35648, -122.54234